On May 18th, Swords to Plowshares, along with Chinatown Community Development Center and San Francisco Mayor London Breed, celebrated the Grand Opening of Maceo May Apartments. Located on Treasure Island, the permanent supportive housing site holds 104 affordable units for veterans and their families as the first project in the city’s Treasure Island Redevelopment Plan to go vertical. We enjoyed commemorating this beautiful, brand-new home with over 100 supporters, project collaborators, and residents. The event was made even more special with members of Maceo May’s family present for the occasion.
The speaking ceremony was emceed by Sherry Williams, Executive Director of One Treasure Island, and remarks were made by Michael Blecker, Executive Director of Swords to Plowshares; Malcolm Yeung, Executive Director of Chinatown Community Development Center; V. Fei Tsen, Board President of Treasure Island Development Authority; Supervisor Matt Dorsey of District 6; Marc Cadieux, Chief Banking Officer at Silicon Valley Bank; Keith Boylan, Deputy Secretary for CalVet; Mike Bartell, USMC veteran and Maceo May Apartments resident; and San Francisco Mayor London Breed.
“Having lived on Treasure Island myself, I understand firsthand what this community means for residents already living here,” said Mayor London Breed. “We need to build more housing at different affordability levels in the City, and we need to build them now. The opening of this housing demonstrates the years of hard work by so many people who care deeply about this community and City, and shows us that if we work together, we can come up with bold ideas to create housing and communities for all San Franciscans.”
This housing site serves in memory of Swords to Plowshares’ first-ever Housing Director, Maceo May. A Vietnam combat veteran, Maceo was a trailblazing advocate for homeless veterans and worked tirelessly to break barriers through his work. This included amplifying the specific experiences of Black veterans, increasing public understanding of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and leading Swords’ housing program. His life’s work has made a lasting impact on our organization and generations of veterans in the San Francisco Bay Area.
The six-story modular construction building (104,500 sq. ft.) has 104 units including multifamily units (studios, 1-BR, and 2-BR), on-site residential services, property management offices, a community room, laundry, parking, bicycle storage, common outdoor areas, a forested healing garden, a playground, and a roof deck.
“Maceo May Apartments is a historic step forward for Treasure Island and the city of San Francisco. It transforms a former military base into a restorative place for veterans," said Michael Blecker, Executive Director at Swords to Plowshares. "It is a fitting tribute to its namesake, Swords to Plowshares’ first director of housing, Maceo May, who was a trailblazer for supportive housing. We couldn’t be prouder to serve these veterans alongside Chinatown CDC, the Mayor’s Office, and the many other supporters of this project.”